Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
For years of my life I have struggled with a level of depression. I was always able to manage it by blocking out feelings, or keeping myself busy, or engaging in all of the wrong things to try and cope. I realized very quickly over the years that avoiding or masking feelings because they are too hard, is a very unhealthy thing. When I came to God in 2007 I was still dealing with depression, but living for God gave me a new outlook on life. I was seeing life in color again, instead of the darkness I had allowed to encompass my world, because the word of God gave me life.
To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified. Isaiah 61:3
Depression is something that can be familial, meaning I’ve probably inherited it. My mother suffered from depression, but unfortunately her way of coping was drinking, which ultimately killed her. Because Jesus died on the cross for me, I don’t have to live in a generational curse. I am now part of the family of God.
“Do not hold against us the sins of past generations; may your mercy come quickly to meet us, for we are in desperate need.” Psalm 79:8
So many people live with depression today, and it is a very real thing, and can be dangerous if not dealt with properly. There are different types of depression, because we are both physical and spiritual beings. It takes caring for both parties to make a person whole. If your spiritual man suffers, so does your physical and vice versa.
I am not against taking medication to help a chemical imbalance, but it certainly isn’t a cure all, and should never be the first course of action. Depression isn’t always spiritual, but there is a very big stigma placed on this. It has been a huge controversy from the beginning of time and still is today. The pharisees often believed that if you had an illness it was an indication of sin in your life.
Mental illness was seen in history as demonic possession, and people were treated as such. Our brains can malfunction as much as any other part of our bodies. If your kidney was not working you would take medication for it. If your heart malfunctions, you would certainly take medication, but you should also watch what you eat, and try to lower your stress levels by cutting out things that aren’t healthy. Sometimes we are lacking vitamins that are essential to well-being. But it could be said, because of the sin of the world, we are subject to things like cancer, and mental illness. How we deal with it largely depends on our faith in God and the circumstances at hand.
We can pray for healing, but we aren’t going to avoid chemo, in a scheme to prove that we don’t need it. God provided men and women with knowledge of our bodies and how to heal with medicine. God also provided men and women of God with knowledge of the things of the spirit, and we should not neglect either. God provided things like Serotonin and Dopamine to control our moods. Sometimes these things can become unbalanced for whatever reason, and it can affect us in negative ways.
Again, the physical man and the spiritual man are at odds here. (Romans 8:7-9) The same can be said about what you feed your mind. If you watch horror movies your mind goes to a dark place. If you feed your mind with happy thoughts, and the word of God, you will find yourself in a better place.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
Anxieties of the world can certainly cause depression. Anxiety is usually due to excessive worry, instead of placing trust in God. Feeling as though you need to take care of everything right now, when we need to learn to slow down and simplify our lives, to become more manageable. We must learn to lean on God more for the answers. Our mind is certainly a battlefield.
The devil will use whatever tools we make available to him, to depress us to the point of giving up. He doesn’t want us to be victorious. He wants nothing better than to kick us while we are down. The quicker you realize that depression has snuck into your life, face it head on, so you can move on. Tell the devil to take off and he will flee. (Matthew 4:10) Then take steps to fix how you got there in the first place, maybe you haven’t dealt with something in your life, like unforgiveness. Whatever the case may be – physical illness, hormonal imbalances, the list can go on and on. ask God to help you pin point the issue, so that you can get healthy again and be successful in living for Him.
Some people blame bad moods on the moon. Our bodies are made up of 75 percent water. The moon is responsible for the tide and controlling great bodies of water if you want to get scientific about it. I’m being funny here, but spiritually speaking GOD is in control. He tells the moon what to do. Job went through some major depression in his time of testing, but he refused to give up and kept on praising God, coming out refined as Gold. (Job 23:10) But the devil was not allowed to tempt Job without God’s okay. God knew that Job would not give up, so he used that situation to test him, and teach us something about who God is. The devil has no power over us, unless we let him have it.
The link I shared below is a great article on depression written by Joyce Meyer. I encourage you to read it, if you are suffering from depression or know someone who is. Most importantly pray for that person in your life.
Jesus does heal, in fact he ALREADY healed everything we would ever face. We just have to have faith. You might say, “I don’t deserve it.” Well exactly my point, Jesus died on the cross so that undeserved favor and healing would be available to us. I believe that because of this action God also gave man special knowledge of how to heal the body. We must weigh out carefully all the information, and pray for wisdom regarding every circumstance we face. If you are facing depression today, the first step is to be honest about it, pray about it, then take action to get healthy. Be blessed!
“Faith takes what Grace made available.” Creflo Dollar